Feb 172010
Authors: Nic Turiciano

Starting today, the CSU community can get a taste of the Silk Road region of Uzbekistan.

Running though May 28, CSU’s Avenir Museum of Design and Merchandising will host an exhibit of historic and contemporary artifacts from the fabled region, along with Uzbek embroidery and natural dye workshops.

The exhibit, held in Room 115 of the University Center for the Arts, will showcase pieces from the region, which is known for its trade in perfumes, spices, silk brocades, ceramics and gems.

“These 19th and 20th century objects are rare because this region has been affected by hundreds of years of war and instability, and it has a climate that does not provide conditions for preservation of textiles,” said Linda Carlson, the Avenir Museum curator.

The historic artifacts, donated by collector Judi Arndt from Colorado Springs, will be showcased alongside contemporary examples of classic Uzbek pieces.

“Our goal is to feature four outstanding Uzbek artisans who are reintroducing the world to the beauty of Silk Road textiles and taking them in exciting new directions,” said Mary Littrell, head of the Department of Design and Merchandising.

Natural dyeing and embroidery workshops with Zarina Kendjaeva, an award-winning textile artisan from Uzbekistan, will be held in conjunction with the exhibit.

The natural dyeing, which uses onion and pomegranate skins, indigo and madder, will be held April 10.

The Suzani Embroidery workshop will be held Sunday, Aprill 11, and Monday, April 12.

Both workshops cost $100 and are limited to 20 participants.

Arndt and Littrell met Kendjaeva when they took a trip to Uzbekistan together in preparation for the exhibit. Her visit and subsequent workshops will help to educate students about a region that, according to Arndt, is misunderstood.

“It will further help people understand that there are women and men in those countries that are doing some of the same things that people here are involved in,” Arndt said.

Arndt, who has traveled in search of textiles to countries like China, Laos, Vietnam and India, took a particular liking to classic Uzbekistan pieces when she first visited the region in 2000.

Arndt’s collection, which she began collecting in 1998, numbers more than 350 pieces, all of which will eventually be donated to CSU.

“I had gotten so many things in my house, and I began to think, ‘Well, what is my family going to do with all of this?’ I don’t want it to end up at Goodwill,” Arndt said.

Two lectures will also be given during the exhibit with themes related to the region and its textile industry.

A lecture centered on artisan development in Central Asia from 1994 to 1999 will be delivered by Mary Cockram, senior director of programs for Aid to Artisans, on Thursday, February 25, at 7 p.m.

Also, Raisa Garieeva, an Uzbek business leader and former director of the Aid to Artisans project, will share examples from the past 10 years of artisans as they enter the international markets. The lecture will be delivered April 8 at 7 p.m.

Both will be held at the University Center for the Arts Annex, Room 136.

For more information regarding the workshops or to register, contact Linda Carlson at linda.carlson@colostate.edu.

Staff writer Nic Turiciano can be reached at verve@collegian.com.

see the exhibit
Begins: Today
Ends: May 28, 2010
Where: Room 115 of the University Center for the Arts.
Workshops on: Uzbeck embroidery and natural dyes.

 Posted by at 5:39 pm

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